Little One at Cincinnati Zoo, 2016 (Carol M Highsmith / Library of Congress)
Name: Little One (male)
Born: 13 December 1989 in Cleveland Zoo, Ohio, USA
Died: 27 March 2021 in Cincinnati Zoo, Ohio, USA
Siblings: None known
History of captivity:
- Born in captivity in Cleveland Zoo, Ohio, USA on 13 December 1989
- Transferred to “World of Bears” at Silver Springs, Florida, USA 5 November 1997
- Returned to Cleveland Zoo 1 May 1998
- Transferred to Cincinnati Zoo, Ohio, USA 4 January 2007.
- Euthanized at Cincinnati Zoo, aged 31 on 27 March 2021.
Little One was euthanized due to renal failure and a rapid decline in his health and quality of life. At 31 years old, he was, at the time of his death, the second oldest male in the U.S. Zoo population. He was a geriatric bear with chronic medical conditions that were being managed by his animal care and veterinary teams.
“Over my 30 plus year career, I’ve had the privilege of caring for 17 polar bears in two zoos. All of them have been amazing animals to care for,” said Cincinnati Zoo’s head bear keeper Lisa Vollmer. “Saying goodbye is always hard, and it was especially hard with Little One. He was one of the most easy going bears I’ve ever worked with and had a great disposition. His passing leaves a huge hole in hearts of all of us who cared for him. Rest in peace Little One. We love you and you will be missed.”
Little One was born at the Cleveland Zoo to parents Snowball and Nauyat on December 13, 1989. Despite being matched with several females over the years, he never sired offspring.
Source: Cincinnati Zoo.
The zoo released the video below to celebrate Little One’s 30th birthday in December 2019.